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The Game Jam That Wouldn’t Die

HECKPOINT began as a game jam, a question. “Wanna see if we can remake an old game in a week? Keep it super simple.”

So we did. We took an old concept, chose an old color palette and made a little world from scratch. This of course was after a long trial run of our first attempt at a platformer game. We kept breaking it. It was pretty frustrating. So, we dialed back and decided to start very simple.

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A week later, we wondered where we could take the idea. Utilizing an engine called Clickteam Fusion, we tried all kinds of stuff in the beginning, . We proceeded to break that engine. Like a lot. A whole bunch. I think I even cried once. We kept pushing the system til we had to stop and change course constantly. We couldn’t stay small for whatever reason. And as disheartening as constant failure can be, some things worked really well in it.

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Holy crap, we made a game.

Heckpoint_screenshot_176It’s pretty nuts if I think about it for too long. A year ago I barely understood how to make pixel art. I knew the basics of animation. I posted a picture on Facebook of an early attempt, and this guy from the writing community got in touch with me.

“Dude, I know how to program. Wanna make a game?”

I quoted some Ghostbusters at the guy (Sean Kelly) about some keymaster shit, and by the next day I was starting to animate for a novel I’d written called Beer Run of the Dead. My roommate and best friend, Greg, went ape-shit.

“I don’t know what I can do to help but I wanna help make a game! Let me in!”

We’re both avid gamers. So we started learning about pixel art and animation together. Eventually, we found Jadan Bliss (who lived right down the road) and now here we are almost a year later.

I am writing this just minutes before we submit to Steam. It’s crazy. We’ve always wanted to make a game and with some teamwork, love, and devotion, we somehow pulled it off.

Hopefully, people enjoy it.

– D.F. Noble